|Review: Cold Northern Vengeance - Domination and Servitude|
|Domination and Servitude|
Label: Bindrune Recordings
Year released: 2008
Genre: Black Metal
Review online: April 26, 2009
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
for:Domination and Servitude
Rated 3.5/5 (70%) (4 Votes)
Do not let the genre notation of Black Metal fool you into thinking that Cold Northern Vengeance are your regular everyday US style of Black Metal band. Oh no. Y'see, that's what I was expecting, having heard the band a few years ago on their split with Martyrvore (as that's pretty much what they were back then – lower tiered USBM). However, come this, their debut full-length, it seems they've changed quite a bit from how I remembered them way back when.
These days it seems Cold Northern Vengeance like to throw in quite a bit of the avant-garde to their twisted blackness, coming on more like a mentally unstable Caina compared to their earlier incarnation of a poorer quality Crebain. Eccentricity is sewn tightly into the seams of this album, and they're certainly more original nowadays due to it; holding a lot more interest for me than their early works. Their penchant for jarring riffwork, bizarre arrangements, bi-polar vocal attack and habit of whipping out a little neo-folk here and there does not always help to create a flowing album. At times, it comes off a little tangled and confused with all the ideas that are being spewed forth from the over-enthusiastic creators. Don't get me wrong though, the album IS good – the near 11 minute epic "A Part Forgotten", with its excellent riffage bursting out all over the track, sweeping solos and demonic vocals piercing your psyche acting as the main highlight, and the awesome ending of "Hidden 93" sounding very much like Brave Murder Day-era Katatonia if it were not for the clean shamanic vocals. For me, the album could have done without the industrial slop of "The By-Paths To Chaos", as it goes on a little too long, but thankfully the rest of the album makes up for it.
Truth be told, the first time I heard the album, I hated it. However, given further time for everything to seep in, I've come to the conclusion that it's well worth checking out for someone wanting some Black Metal that doesn't sound exactly like everyone else out there at the moment. Put it this way, the music certainly doesn't sound like it's coming from a band with such a generic name as Cold Northern Vengeance. An interesting oddity, with plentiful ideas that work more often than not.
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